Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) promotes the development of atherosclerosis and is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. High-sensitivity cardiac troponin I (hs-cTnI) assays fundamentally improved the diagnosis of myocardial injury and even enable the prediction of future cardiovascular events in the general population. However, data about the association of hs-cTnI with cardiovascular risk factors and carotid intima media thickness (cIMT) as a marker of atherosclerosis are limited, especially in patients with T2DM.
In this cross-sectional study we analyzed clinical and laboratory parameters of 234 patients (43% women) with T2DM and a median age of 65 years (interquartile range: 57-71). The median duration of diabetes mellitus was 10 years (6-17). Anthropometric data, blood pressure, glycemic parameters and lipid profiles were determined. Hs-cTnI plasma concentrations were measured on an ADVIA Centaur XPT immunoassay analyzer and cIMT was evaluated by high-resolution ultrasound.
Hs-cTnI plasma concentrations were below the gender-specific 99  percentile in 93% of T2DM patients with a median concentration of 4.0 ng/l (interquartile range: 2.0-10.0). Hs-cTnI was significantly associated with gender, renal function and C-reactive protein in the entire study cohort. Gender-specific analyses revealed cIMT and renal function to be significantly associated with hs-cTnI in men. Contrary, only age was significantly associated with hs-cTnI in women.
In a real-world clinical setting in patients with T2DM, cIMT is a predictor of subclinical myocardial damage in men, but not in women.

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.